Friday, December 31, 2004

A trying evening. Caroline woke up about 4:15. I fed her 3 oz. of milk and a squash. We took a short walk outside since the weather was great and she'd been indoors for most of the time in NJ. Brought her home and assembled the high chair while she played in her jumperoo. Then the screaming began. She was a very fussy eater tonight, but I eventually got some cereal, about 3 oz. of milk and a 4 oz. jar of chicken noodle baby food into her mouth. She covered her face and hands with the baby food, so I gave her a quick bath accompanied by her pleasant shrieks. Immediately after the bath, she calmed down, and I attempted to feed her the rest of her milk, but she pretty much rejected it and only wanted to cuddle against me and sleep. I rocked her in her room for about 10 minutes before transfer to her crib about 7:40; she hasn't yet protested sleeping alone, although I'm sure it's only a matter of time.

A busy day for the two of us. Shortly after rejecting the majority of her morning cereal and then taking a short nap, I took Caroline to her former favorite store, Target. Not only did they not carry the high chair I had chosen after some web research this morning, but their diaper sale advertised in this week's circular was a sham - it was two jumbo packs of pampers on special for $17 instead of $9.44 each, yet the mega packs, which contained twice as many as the jumbo packs, were $16.79. Perhaps they thought the convenience of having two separate packs of diapers was worth the extra $0.21? We came home around noon, and she ate another 4 ounces of milk, a full 'stage 2' size naners, and some more cereal. Then we joined our friend Steph at Costco to sample some food we'd never buy and look for the high chair there. Costco didn't carry high chairs (or at least we couldn't find them), but there was a Babies R Us two stores down that had the model I wanted (a Graco Harmony). Caroline was playful, alert, and not the least bit fussy the entire time. She also doesn't sound as congested as she was yesterday. She fell asleep on the car ride home and is still sleeping in her travel bucket now.

Caroline slept fitfully from about 4:30 until 8:15 this morning after Cheryl left on her mini-vacation. I fed her 5 ounces of milk at about 8:40. Despite our worries, she had no problem going back to the bottle. I'm trying to feed her some cereal now, but she's more interested in gnawing on the tag of one her stuffed bears.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

So here we are, back in Winston. Our house is now filled with toys and bags filled with new duds for the wee one. Again, Caroline has extremely giving friends and family members, and Jay and I constantly appreciate their unexpected and generous gifts.

Caroline is currently napping after a third night of needy, sick non-restful slumber. Attempts to lay her in her crib last night were met with blood-curdling shrieks of terror. After 20 minutes of her howls left me feeling like a cruel beast, I relented and let her into our bed. She would only sleep when clinging desperately to me -- efforts to put her a bit to my side so I could sleep were met with the aforementioned cries. This could be problematic for Jay when I head out of the country for a few days to attend my friend Emily's wedding in Cabo San Lucas. Hopefully, I will be out of sight and, therefore, out of mind for the 67 or so hours (but who's counting?) we will be separated so she and Jay can get some much needed rest.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

It's our last day in Toms River before the long trek south tomorrow. Caroline slept a bunch today and got her appetite back, so we're hoping she's on the mend. She was happy and active when she was awake as well.

Monday, December 27, 2004

After trips all over the state and exposure to dozens of relatives, our little one appears to have come down with a cold last night. Yesterday we went to the Grandpa Zukowski's family's christmas celebration in Randolph. On the way back to the Zukowski estate we stopped at my Uncle Seymour and Aunt Marilyn's where Caroline met her second cousins Rachel and Allison. Last night she woke up around 1 with a really stuffy noise and has had a lot of trouble sleeping today. Her nose has been running and she's not eating very well either. Cheryl and Aunt Cristen are trying to clear her nose before bed with a good steaming followed by her daily bath.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Caroline is doing her best to distract everyone from completing their holiday tasks.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Caroline has had a rough few nights. I think she's getting her two front teeth just in time for Christmas, and the pressure and pain are rousing her from slumber. Although, come to think of it, the girl stood unassisted this morning for a few seconds while Grandma Zukowski and Jay watched. From what I've read, new skills can also cause sleep disturbances, so perhaps the burning desire to stand and walk is keeping her up at night. Of course the most likely scenario is that she's getting ghostly visits from her former business partner and other spirits entreating her to mend her avaricious ways and hold Christmas dear before it is too late to save her black soul and poor sick Tiny Tim.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Caroline met Aunt Kim and Uncle Seth for the first time tonight. Clearly, they will be best friends for life.

Saturday, December 18, 2004

We made it safely to NJ at about 4am last night. Caroline was showered with attention all day. Here she's enjoying a huge dinner, sitting in a high chair from Grandma Zukes.

Friday, December 17, 2004

We'll be roadtripping to New Jersey in a few hours, driving through the night to minimize the impact on Caroline's sleeping and eating schedule. I caught her displaying her two chompers in this picture - the two offenders which may prematurely bring an end to her nursing days.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Caroline and Cheryl (and I) wish Grandma Lerman a happy birthday. We took a trip to the mall this afternoon for an excuse to get out of the house. Caroline was quite squirmy, but all the activity led to a very good afternoon nap.

Caroline would like to send birthday greetings to Grandma Libby! Happy Birthday! (today's picture is forthcoming...)

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

It's freezing out. We did not leave the house. We should have lots of pictures. We don't.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Caroline, here looking sober as a judge, is actually feeling rather festive today in honor of Grandma Zukowski's birthday. She is rolling about on the floor, sucking on a plastic ring and making velociraptor noises -- her way to party.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Caroline enjoys her dinner of mush. Mmmm...mush.

Caroline and I just spent about an hour cleaning out her dresser. She's gotten so big that she's outgrown several of her favorite outfits. Luckily, we seem to have the same getups in her new size, so all is well. (I'll wash them a few extra times so they have that comfy, worn feeling for her. And by "I'll wash them", I mean Jay will wash them.) Look for many new ensembles over the next few weeks. There are many super cute outfits -- mostly from Caroline's extremely generous friends and family members -- released from the "too big" drawer this morning that I can't wait to get on her.

Caroline got her second flu shot this morning - Cheryl had the duty to pin her down this time. She's also gained two pounds since her last visit a month ago and is now back within the acceptable weight parameters.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Caroline is 7 months old today. She took very few naps yesterday during the party, and did not sleep well in the hotel room last night, yet she was surprisingly well-behaved today at lunch with Banta and Ginger in Richmond and the subsequent car ride back home. She has 5 days to catch up on her sleep before our next, much longer roadtrip.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

With no afternoon nap and her normal bedtime minutes away, Caroline shows no indication that she wants to leave the party.

Caroline with Yuri; he's getting his own daughter in March.

Caroline with Banta, the new graduate.

Roadtrip to Richmond for our friend Banta's graduation party. Caroline seems to be getting along with Gab and Rose. More pictures to come.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Action shot.

Cheryl thinks she looks really cute in this picture. I agree, and think she looks like a cute baby boy.

Caroline got a present in the mail yesterday from from the Lerman grandparents. She loves it.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I took Caroline on a trip to the mall this afternoon. She clutched the cupholder at the front of the carriage and sat upright the entire time, eventually tiring and gradually slumping forward into the nap she's taking in this picture. The first time she fell asleep like this I moved her into a more comfortable-looking reclining position, but she woke up, pulled herself up, and shortly passed out like this again.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Caroline and I went for a long walk this afternoon in unseasonably warm weather. Unfortunately, it was very overcast and raining off and on, so there are no pictures. She took only a very short afternoon nap during the last 15 minutes of the walk, so she became cranky early in the evening. We put her to bed about an hour earlier than normal and are hoping that it doesn't affect her waking time.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Holiday lights around her cage are providing us with plenty of amusement.

Today, Jay took my car for an oil change while I recovered from this morning's finance exam. Caroline's presence sparked a conversation between Jay and the owners of Bill's Auto Clinic, Bill and wife of Bill, about teething and fun things to use to distract your baby. I believe Christmas lights were mentioned. Consequently, Jay is currently hanging some Christmas and Hanukkah lights around the living room. By "hang", I mean he's precariously stringing them around across the fan, on the baby cage (playpen), and around the jumperoo, creating a rather treacherous hazard for all of the inhabitants of the house. He has, however, gleefully proclaimed it a holiday wonderland.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

We took a nice long walk around the campus this afternoon while Cheryl studied for finals. Caroline was very crabby yesterday, but today, with some good long naps, she's been happy and active.

Friday, December 03, 2004

We went to Target this morning, and Caroline picked out this fine training potty. She's nearly 7 months old, so clearly it's about time we weaned her from her expensive and undignified diaper habit.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Caroline was not the happiest of campers today. We took her on a good long walk this afternoon, which she enjoyed, but there was a lot of crabbiness the rest of the day. We suspect she was tired; her nap schedule was kind of off today - my bad.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Today we weighed Caroline on our semi-accurate bathroom scale. The giant feedings seem to be working. She seems to be up to 15.4 lbs which means that we really might have been underfeeding her. It's also possible that we're now grossly overfeeding her as well, since she's packed on about 1.5 lbs (give or take .5 lbs) since 11/12/04. In the words of our dear friend Kelly, Caroline is getting her chunk on.

In developmental news, Caroline can roll around with ease, creep, and stand steady when holding onto stuff. Moreover, she appears to be on the verge of figuring out how to sit up from a laying position. And in a move that has made Jay gleeful, Caroline has started to babble da-da-da-dee. I'm pretty sure she doesn't know what she's saying, but since the "daddy" lessons have been ongoing for the past 4 months, she just might.

Since October 1, 2004